On Friday 17th February over 60 representatives from a broad range of interest groups gathered at the Herefordshire and Marches RETROFIT SKILLS AND TRAINING SUMMIT to discuss the retrofit skills revolution needed to meet national and regional goals for building decarbonisation and net zero, and growing householder demand for homes that are comfortable, sustainable and affordable to run.
16 quickfire presentations across three sessions described the urgent need for whole house retrofit, the scale of the challenge nationally and locally and the wider opportunity it presents economically, environmentally and socially. We heard about the demand (and money) that’s already there in the able to pay market and growing with local support and activity promoting retrofit. And the opportunity integrating retrofit into the existing 11bn annual UK maintenance, repair and renovation market presents. But we heard repeatedly the challenge is delivery — the scale of need outpaces supply. That retrofit doesn’t just have to be done — it has to be done right. That a whole house approach must be taken — not the over emphasis on green tech we currently have. And that retrofit is part of complex system — a system that needs to change.
Links to the presentations (where there was one) and a recording of each of the sessions is provided below so you can find out more about the arguments made and solutions put forward.
Session 1 – National and Marches context
- Why Herefordshire has ambitions for retrofit Cllr Ellie Chowns, Herefordshire Council Cabinet Member – Environment and Economy; Vice-Chairperson of Employment Panel; and Group Leader for The Green Party, and current Chair of Herefordshire Climate and Nature Partnership Board
- The CITB Net Zero Action Plan Sandra Stevens, Construction Industry Training Board Marches/West Midlands CLICK FOR PRESENTATION
- Retrofit and the Midlands Net Zero Hub Alex Pearson, Net Zero Projects Manager, Midlands Net Zero Hub CLICK FOR PRESENTATION
- Herefordshire’s strategy for retrofit and low-carbon heating Gareth Ellis, Sustainability and Climate Change Officer, Herefordshire Council CLICK FOR PRESENTATION
- How the Warmer Homes ERDF project has transformed properties in Herefordshire, its impact on Connexus zero carbon planning, and insights into the retrofit skills and PAS 2035 requirements for government grant-funded projects. Rosemary Coyne, Warmer Homes ERDF Compliance and Co-ordination Project Manager at Connexus and Co-ordinator for the Sustainable Housing Action Partnership (SHAP) CLICK FOR PRESENTATION
- Future Ready Homes Tony Baker, Project Manager, Marches Energy Agency CLICK FOR PRESENTATION